Scottish farmers have been urged to pay more attention to health and safety issues, after figures emerged which show two thirds of Scots killed at work last year worked in agriculture.

Analysis by the Health and Safety Executive showed fifteen workplace fatalities occurred between April 2010 and March 2011 and nine were in agriculture.

Six of the fatal incidents were linked to work place transport issues, such as being hit by a moving vehicle, being trapped in an overturned vehicle and being injured in a quad bike incident.

Across the UK the most common cause of serious and fatal injuries in agriculture involves moving and overturning vehicles.

Rural affairs secretary Richard Lochhead said: “I urge Scotland’s farmers and crofters to take heed of these tragedies in their day to day working. Scottish Government inspectors will continue to support the HSE in getting the safety message out across around the country, to improve the health and safety record of our industry.”

NFU Scotland President, Nigel Miller, added: “If we are to turn around our industry’s tragic record for deaths and injuries then farmers and their staff need to change their mind set when it comes to safety on farm.

“The dangers and risks associated with farming are a permanent part of everyday life on a farm and will not change. However, what must change is the way those working in the industry regard the health and safety of themselves, their family and their workers.”

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